As we have just retired, exchanging houses is on top of our bucket list! So we have had the opportunity to exchange houses with a Greek family.
Evdokia and Minas from Kavala near Thessaloniki had contacted us just before our New Year’s exchange in Leeuwarden, European cultural capital of 2018.
We booked our flights and were lucky to exchange cars also. And so we arrived in the middle of winter at Thessaloniki Airport.
After searching car keys and texting each other where to find the cars, we were ready to explore Thessaloniki.
An amazing city full of culture, Roman and Byzantine and a lot of hidden spots we hadn’t expected. We admired the beautiful churches and “The Rotunda”! In ancient times its mosaics must have been as splendid and impressing as the ones we had been able to admire in Ravenna during a former exchange.
Soon it was time for our first Greek coffee and surprisingly, even in wintertime, we could enjoy a frappe! Love it!
In the evening my wife and I reached the lovely seaside village Palaio near Kavala. Thanks to the neighbours we had a very warm welcome and the great meal Evdokia had prepared made us feel most welcome!
During our exchange, we visited Filippi, the old town with the forum and its splendid theatre, all without the overpopulation of summertime visitors!
We loved the beautiful walks into the Nestos Valley, enjoyed wandering around unspoiled small towns like Drama, Amphelio and Kavala.
We took a boat trip to the island of Thasos, visited its beaches and white marble quarries. In Skala Panagias we witnessed inhabitants dancing in the streets.
Just Greece as we like Greece to be.
Happy people, enjoying life.
And so did we, being Greeks for ten amazing days!
Frans and Sonja / BE022